It’s not easy to return after a long break, so don’t be too tough on yourself if you’re struggling to get back into study mode. Whether it’s a summer break, or you’re returning as a mature student looking for a career change, it can be a daunting and overwhelming task to readjust. Here are some tips from our past students which you may find helpful.
If you’re feeling anxious about starting to study again and have the tendency to procrastinate (I know I do) just tell yourself you’ll just do a 30-minute session to get you going. Even if you’re struggling to concentrate, 30 minutes doesn’t seem too unmanageable! What usually happens is after about 20-25 minutes you start getting into your study, and before you know it you’ve done 1-2 hours.
You might also find StayFocusd and Tomato Timer helpful in keeping your concentration. StayFocusd stops you from getting distracted by websites and social media whereas Tomato Timer breaks up your studying into smaller chunks. Make sure to check out the other productivity tools recommended by Kent!
After taking a 2-year break from studying, it took a while to return into an academic mindset especially after working full-time. I found advanced planning and group study sessions helped get me back into the swing of things. It also really helped that I was studying a subject that I can directly apply to my role.
If you’re looking for somewhere suitable to meet up, the Templeman Library has plenty of relaxed study areas for group work. It has re-opened but with limited services so keep this in mind ahead of your visit.
Plan ahead! If you know you have an early seminar make sure you’re prepared and have enough sleep. I usually try and return to a more regular sleep schedule 2 weeks before term starts, giving my body enough time to get used to the early starts.
Make the most out of feedback sessions. You can speak to the Student Learning Advisory Service (SLAS) for extra support in your studies e.g. if it’s been a while since you’ve written in an academic style. Slowly get back into a routine, don’t rush yourself.